Stress is a normal psychological and physical reaction to positive or negative situations in your life, such as a new job or the death of a loved one. Stress itself isn't abnormal or bad. What's important is how you deal with stress.
When you have so much trouble adjusting to a stressful change that you find it difficult to go about your daily routine, you may have developed an adjustment disorder. An adjustment disorder is a type of stress-related mental illness that can affect your feelings, thoughts and behaviors.
Signs and symptoms of an adjustment disorder can include:
- Poor school or work performance
- Relationship problems
- Thoughts of suicide
- Trouble sleeping
If you're dealing with a stressful situation in your life, try self-help measures, such as talking things over with caring family or friends, practicing yoga or meditation, getting regular exercise, and cutting back on your to-do list. If these techniques don't help and you feel like you're still having a hard time coping, talk to your doctor.
Dec. 30, 2015
See more Expert Answers
- Trauma- and stressor-related disorders. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-5. 5th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2013. http://www.psychiatryonline.org. Accessed Dec. 1, 2015.
- Manage stress. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://healthfinder.gov/HealthTopics/Category/health-conditions-and-diseases/heart-health/manage-stress. Accessed Dec. 1, 2015.
- Casey P. Adjustment disorder: New developments. Current Psychiatry Reports. 2014;16:451.